Selamat Datang / Welcome to the Indonesian Portal
Indonesia ( IN-d?-NEE-zh? or IN-doh-NEE-zee-?; Indonesian: [?ndonesia]) is a sovereign state and transcontinental country located mainly in southeast Asia, with some territories in Oceania. Situated between the Indian and Pacific oceans, it is the world's largest island country, with more than seventeen thousand islands. At 1,904,569 square kilometres (735,358 square miles), Indonesia is the world's 14th-largest country in terms of land area and world's 7th-largest country in terms of combined sea and land area. It has an estimated population of over 261 million people and is the world's fourth most populous country, the most populous Austronesian nation, as well as the most populous Muslim-majority country. The world's most populous island, Java, contains more than half of the country's population.
Indonesia's form of government includes an elected legislature and president. Indonesia has 34 provinces, of which five have Special Administrative status. Its capital and most populous city is Jakarta, which is also the most populous city in Southeast Asia. The country shares land borders with Papua New Guinea, East Timor, and the eastern part of Malaysia. Other neighbouring countries include Singapore, Vietnam, the Philippines, Australia, Palau, and the Indian territory of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Despite its large population and densely populated regions, Indonesia has vast areas of wilderness that support the world's third highest level of biodiversity. The country has abundant natural resources like oil and natural gas, tin, copper and gold. Agriculture mainly produces rice, palm oil, tea, coffee, cacao, medicinal plants, spices and rubber. Indonesia's major trading partners are Japan, the United States, China and neighbours Singapore, Malaysia and Australia.
The Indonesian archipelago has been an important region for trade since at least the 7th century, when Srivijaya and then later Majapahit traded with China and India. Local rulers gradually absorbed foreign cultural, religious and political models from the early centuries CE, and Hindu and Buddhist kingdoms flourished. Indonesian history has been influenced by foreign powers drawn to its natural resources. Muslim traders and Sufi scholars brought the now-dominant Islam, while European powers brought Christianity and fought one another to monopolise trade in the Spice Islands of Maluku during the Age of Discovery. Following three and a half centuries of Dutch colonialism starting from Amboina and Batavia, and eventually all of the archipelago including Timor and Western New Guinea, at times interrupted by Portuguese, French and British rule, Indonesia secured its independence after World War II.
Indonesia consists of hundreds of distinct native ethnic and linguistic groups, with the largest--and politically dominant--ethnic group being the Javanese. The population is unevenly spread throughout the islands within a variety of habitats and levels of development, ranging from the megalopolis of Jakarta to uncontacted tribes in the Papua. A shared identity has developed, defined by a national language, ethnic diversity, religious pluralism within a Muslim-majority population, and a history of colonialism and rebellion against it. Indonesia's national motto, "Bhinneka Tunggal Ika" ("Unity in Diversity" literally, "many, yet one"), articulates the diversity that shapes the country. Indonesia's economy is the world's 16th largest by nominal GDP and the 7th largest by GDP at PPP. Indonesia is a member of several multilateral organizations, including the UN, WTO, IMF and G20 major economies. It is also a founding member of Non-Aligned Movement, Association of Southeast Asian Nations, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, East Asia Summit, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.
Fuad Muhammad Syafruddin, best known by his pen name Udin, was an Indonesian journalist who was murdered in 1996. A reporter at the Yogyakarta, Java, daily newspaper Bernas, he published articles on corruption in the Bantul Regency in the months before his death. On 13 August, he was attacked at his house by two unidentified assailants with a metal rod. He died three days later without regaining consciousness. His murder became a national cause célèbre. Several independent inquiries concluded that local government officials had been involved. However, the Bantul police, who early on discounted a political motive, arrested a local driver for the murder, alleging a motive of jealousy. Sumaji was later acquitted after the prosecution withdrew its case owing to a lack of evidence. The police in turn were successfully sued for their mishandling of the case and deliberate destruction of evidence. The murder has never been solved, and is expected to be unprosecutable after 2014 due to Indonesia's 18-year statute of limitations on murder. (Read more...)
Pong Tiku (1846-1909) was a Torajan leader and guerrilla fighter who operated in southern Sulawesi, part of modern-day Indonesia. The son of the lord of Pangala', after Tiku captured the neighbouring kingdom Baruppu' he became its leader. By exploiting the coffee trade and allying with the lowlands Buginese, Tiku was able to compile large amounts of wealth, land, and power. When the Dutch colonials, based in Java, invaded Sulawesi in the early 1900s, Tiku and his soldiers utilised fortresses to withstand and launch attacks. Captured in October 1906, in January 1907 he escaped and remained at large until June. He was executed several days later. Since his death, Tiku has been used as a symbol of Torajan resistance. Long commemorated in Sulawesi, he was officially declared a National Hero of Indonesia in 2002. (Read more...)
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